Erik Swabb’s practice focuses on investigations, crisis management, and public policy counseling related to defense, national security, and government contracts. Prior to rejoining the firm in 2019, he served as General Counsel of the US Senate Armed Services Committee and Special Adviser to the Legal Adviser of the US Department of State. Before his legal career, he was a US Marine infantry officer.

Mr. Swabb conducts internal investigations and responds to government inquiries for defense contractors and other companies whose businesses intersect national security or involve government contracts. Past matters have involved a range of issues, including regulatory and government contract compliance, the False Claims Act, anti-corruption, economic sanctions, and congressional oversight. He has also represented clients in investigations related to military operations, equipment, and training. He has particular experience in conducting sensitive internal investigations in challenging foreign environments.

Mr. Swabb also counsels clients facing corporate crises, congressional inquiries, and other matters at the intersection of law, national security, and public policy, drawing on his experience in the US government.

As General Counsel of the US Senate Armed Services Committee from 2017 to 2018 under Chairman John McCain, Mr. Swabb reviewed and advised on all nominations referred to the committee. He managed the committee’s nominations process and facilitated bipartisan support for over 40 civilian nominations and over 20,000 military nominations confirmed by the Senate. In addition, he helped ensure the passage of the National Defense Authorization Act, the annual defense policy bill that authorizes funding and provides authorities for the US Department of Defense. He also advised on oversight and legislative matters, as well as ethics compliance for committee staff. As Special Adviser to the Legal Adviser of the US Department of State from 2018 to 2019, Mr. Swabb provided counsel to the Department’s top lawyer on a range of issues, including congressional oversight, foreign assistance, international claims, and international law.

In 2015, Mr. Swabb left WilmerHale and served as a policy advisor for former Florida Governor Jeb Bush’s presidential campaign.

Prior to his legal career, Mr. Swabb served as an infantry officer in the US Marine Corps from 2002 to 2006. He led a light armored reconnaissance platoon on combat operations in Iraq and supervised unit training as the second-in-command of a company. After law school, he returned to active duty from 2009 to 2010 to serve in the UN Mission in Liberia. He directed multinational operations for information collection in a remote border region and managed the drawdown of the UN peacekeeping force.

Mr. Swabb maintains an active pro bono practice representing military veterans seeking disability and other benefits.

Experience

    • Counsel for a major defense contractor in multiple internal investigations in the Middle East.
    • Counsel for a market-leading company in parallel civil and criminal investigations by the US Department of Justice related to the US military. 
    • Counsel for a major company in an internal investigation and related Department of Defense inquiries.
    • Counsel for a global technology company in a US sanctions investigation.
    • Counsel for a major consulting firm in a congressional inquiry related to government contracts.
    • Counsel for a market-leading company in multiple congressional hearings related to the US military.
    • Counsel for companies and individuals in connection with executive branch and congressional strategies related to defense and national security.
    • Counsel for a former US Army general in congressional inquiries related to Benghazi. 
    • Counsel for a senior US government official in a congressional hearing related to national security.
    • Counsel for an individual in a high-profile nomination for a Cabinet position related to national security.
    • Counsel for a global financial institution in a cross-border, anti-money laundering investigation.
    • Counsel for a major financial institution in multiple anti-money laundering investigations.
    • Counsel for a global financial institution in an anti-money laundering investigation in Latin America.
    • Counsel for a global financial institution in an anti-money laundering and sanctions investigation by the US Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations.
    • Counsel for a large defense contractor in an action against the US Air Force concerning the launch of military satellites through discovery and trial before the Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals.
    • Counsel for a major defense contractor in a dispute with a subcontractor involving contracted services in Afghanistan.
     

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Credentials

  • Education

    • JD, Harvard Law School, 2009

      Supervising Editor, Harvard Journal on Legislation
    • BA, Political Science, Columbia University, 2002

      summa cum laude Phi Beta Kappa
  • Admissions

    • District of Columbia

    • New York

  • Government Experience

    • Federal Legislative Branch

      US Senate

      General Counsel, Committee on Armed Services
    • Department of State

      Special Adviser to the Legal Adviser of the Department of State

Credentials